Hemlock (Hemlock, #1)

First Lines: Blood ran down my hands in thin rivers.  I yanked on the chain-link fence, ignoring the pain, desperate to widen a gap at the bottom where someone had cut the wire.

This book languished on my to-read shelf for 4 long years.  (That’s a fun word…languished.)  Anyway, in my off-beat way of picking out books, I decided that I needed a shifter book to make its way into my hands.  I mean, why not?  Werewolves can be really awesome. And this had a high rating on Goodreads.

For Mackenzie “Mac” Dobson, life changed the moment her best friend Amy was murdered by a werewolf.  Lupine syndrome–otherwise known as the werewolf virus–is turning into an epidemic in the US and it’s not easy for wolves to control their bloodlust.  But it soon becomes clear that not everything–or everyone–in Hemlock is what it seems.  Secrets practically pave the town and Mac is determined to discover who killed Amy…but these answers will come with a price.

*cracks knuckles* Alright.  Let’s get started.

Ok, so concept-wise, I thought this story was pretty cool.  Mac’s friend was murdered, which gives it an instant intrigue factor.  Also, there’s this hugely political side of the story when it comes to werewolves.  Are werewolves people?  Do they deserve the rights of normal people or are they fleabags that need to be contained for the safety of everyone?  That was a side to the story I wasn’t expecting but really enjoyed.  (Even if real politics make me either bored stiff or radioactive in anger.)

But otherwise, I found the story kind of eh.  The plot played out fine (especially since I already liked where the story was going), but there were some strange things.  Like how Mac has dreams every night of Amy…and in these dreams, Amy seems almost prophetic, which should be pretty well impossible if they are actually dreams.  (And the story gives no indication otherwise.)  It seemed…odd.  A little out of place, even.

Oh, and there’s a love triangle. […]  Can these just find an endless abyss already?  It was predictable and slightly irritating.  And I can already tell it’s going to get worse in later books.

It was the characters, though, that really made the story stand still for me.  They all felt so stereotypical.  Mac is kind of a bumbling heroine who is completely clueless about the fact that her two best guy friends are utterly and sickeningly smitten with her.  Jason, one of the two guys, is your typical rich kid who has no concept of budgeting money.  Kyle, the other guy, is the troubled, wounded soul who always believes the worst about himself.  And, to round things out, Tess, Mac’s 26 year old guardian, is clearly a 26 year old who probably shouldn’t be someone’s guardian.

None of the characters surprised me.  I wasn’t even really surprised by the “bad guy” in the story for stooping to normal bad guy levels.  Everyone seemed to stay firmly in the mold they were made in, with only a couple of characters breaking out of that to becoming interesting.

While it was an interesting story, I wish the characters had more depth.

2 thoughts on “Hemlock (Hemlock, #1)

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